In mathematics, operations are procedures we perform on numbers or variables. Examples you're familiar with include addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. A binary operation is a special type of operation that combines two elements to produce another element.
Think of a binary operation as a machine that takes in two inputs and spits out one output. For example, consider addition, a common binary operation. If we input 2 and 3 into our 'addition machine', it combines these numbers and gives us 5 as output.
You encounter binary operations in mathematics more often than you might think:
Binary operations can have certain properties:
Binary operations are fundamental in many areas of mathematics. They are the building blocks for many mathematical structures, including a special structure known as a 'group' which we'll explore in our next article. Stay tuned!
Remember, in mathematics, understanding is key. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask in the comments below. Happy learning!